Publication Date


Advisor(s) - Committee Chair

Robert Hoyt, Larry Gleason, Blaine Ferrell

Degree Program

Department of Biology

Degree Type

Master of Science


Food habits of larvae of the northern hog sucker, common shiner, rosyface shiner, and Micropterus sp. from the Middle Fork of Drake's Creek, Kentucky were identified from 18 March to 12 August 1982. Eighteen taxa of animals were observed in the stream drift and a total of seventeen taxa, including larval fish, were identified in the stomach analysis. Eggs, rotifers, hydracarina, and diptera represented the greatest component of the drift comprising 34%, 32%, 8%, and 6%, respectively. The major organisms observed in the gut analysis included eggs (fish, rotifer, and copepod species), rotifers (Euchlanis sp.), diptera (Chironomidae), annelida (Naididae), copepoda (cyclopoids), and cladocera (Alona, Camptocercus, and unknown spp.). The northern hog sucker had the most diverse diet ingesting 15 different taxa, whereas the rosyface shiner consumed only 8 taxa. Rosyface shiners selected rotifers in their diet during their first four weeks of life and during the last two weeks as larvae (Ivlev's Electivity Index). shiners selected for week while selecting hog suckers selected a greater variety of organisms during their only for dipterans during their last week. for dipterans Common first Northern annelids, dipterans, and copepods throughout their larval period. Micropterus sp. selected rotifers, annelids, cladocerans, and copepods during their first two weeks and annelids, cladocerans, and copepods during their last four weeks as larvae. Piscivory was observed in Micropterus sp. during the third week of life with 12% of the meta-larvae consuming other larvae. With the exception of Micnoptetuz sp., larvae ingested progressively more taxa as they developed from pro - to meta-larvae. The greatest percentage of empty stomachs in all species was observed in the pro-larvae and the fewest in the meta-larvae. Likewise, the rosyface shiner had the greatest percentage of empty stomachs of the four major species studied.

Even as larvae, the four species studied demonstrated resource sharing and positive interrelationships in their food habits.


Biology | Life Sciences

Included in

Biology Commons